Government of Canada and Nature Conservancy of Canada Conserve Valuable Habitat in Johnson’s Mills Properties in New Brunswick
MONCTON, N.B. -- January 19, 2011 -- Canada’s Environment Minister Peter Kent today announced the Nature Conservancy of Canada's successful acquisition of Johnson’s Mills Properties—3.74 hectares (9.25 acres) of land near Moncton, New Brunswick. This project was secured in part with funding from Environment Canada's Natural Areas Conservation Program and has an overall budget of $71,424.
“This acquisition marks another achievement under our government's Natural Areas Conservation Program. With this investment, we are taking real action to protect and conserve our ecosystems and sensitive species for present and future generations,” said Minister Kent. “Your actions today will help to protect the abundance and variety of life that will constitute an integral part of our natural heritage tomorrow.”
The Johnson’s Mills properties are in one of the focal areas identified in the conservation plan for the Chignecto Bay Natural Area in the upper Bay of Fundy. The mudflats and tidal marshes at the head of the Bay of Fundy are one of the most important stopover sites for shorebirds in North America. Every summer, more than two million shorebirds fly through the Bay on their winter migration from the Canadian Arctic to South America, and feed on the nutrient rich mudflats. These large flocks of shorebirds also attract Peregrine Falcon which congregate here to prey on them, thus contributing to the survival and recovery of this species as well. The Peregrine Falcon is considered to be of special concern by the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada.
“In 1994, the Nature Conservancy of Canada identified the need to protect this precious habitat at Johnson’s Mills and today we have increased the size of the reserve substantially,” said Linda Stephenson, Regional Vice President of the Nature Conservancy of Canada’s Atlantic Region. “Piece by piece we have secured over 190 hectares (470 acres) of critical habitat for migrating shorebirds.”
The Government of Canada's $225-million Natural Areas Conservation Program is an important on-the-ground initiative that takes real action to preserve Canada’s environment and conserve its precious natural heritage for present and future generations. It is through the ongoing contribution from all donors to this program that we can ensure the protection of natural areas in Canada. As of July 2010, under the Natural Areas Conservation Program 142,236 hectares (351,384 acres) have been conserved, protecting habitat for over 101 species at risk.
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